Its actually pretty hard to keep track of the supplements Joe Rogan is taking. There’s a lot of misinformation out there. In this post I’ll try to clear up what we know, and cite sources for the information:
Joe takes Pure Encapsulations Athletic Pure Pack multivitamin. These packs are interesting in the sense that they contain a combination of vitamins & minerals, fish oils and things like creatine, co-enzyme q10 and alpha lipoic acid. Each pack contains:
Vitamins & Minerals – 3x capsules
EPA/DHA Essentials – 1x capsule
Kre-Alkalyn (creatine) – 2x capsules
Ascorbic Acid – 1x capsule
CoQ10 – 1x capsule
L-Glutamine – 1x capsule
In many ways they aim to be a one-stop shop for all your supplement needs. You can throw them in a bag when travelling, and the pack would suffice in terms of your micronutrient needs.
The multivitamin was first confirmed by Joe via an Instagram post from 2013:
Then most recently, in his podcast episode #802 with Tom Papa (from 2016) he specifically talks again about the Athletic Pure Pack multivitamin. See 1:08:50 (1 hour, 8mins, 50s) for his mention of the multivitamin.
One thing that is interesting about the Athletic Pure Pack is that is possibly formed the inspiration for the Onnit Total Primate Care packs. Joe owns a substantial stake in Onnit, so I’d imagine he passed on the idea of daily sachets.
Total Primate Care (TPC) sachets look quite similar to Althletic Pure Packs, in that they’re sachets that contain a bunch of supplements within. One key difference is that Athletic Pure Packs contain much more essential micronutrients. Whereas TPC focuses more on nootropics & mushrooms. If you had to choose between the two, it makes most sense to go for the one with more essential micronutrients. This is because nootropics and mushrooms our body can do without, but essential micronutrients are just that… essential. Our body *has* to get theme from external sources, because it can’t synthesise them like it can do with other things.
Fish Oil – Carlson’s Super Omega-3
Joe is big into fish oils, and ensures they are a part of his daily supplement stack. In the above podcast you can jump to 1:02:40 for their discussion of fish oils, and its importance.
Joe talks about the benefits of vitamin D in this podcast with Tom Papa. Back in his 2011(ish) video where he demos his supplement cupboard, it shows him taking Solgar’s D3 5,000iu, but that was a long time ago. Since then he has had Dr Rhonda Patrick on the podcast a number of times providing supplement advice. In particular, Rhonda notes that whilst too little vitamin D is bad, too much vitamin D is also bad. She suggests the optimal range is a blood concentration between 40 – 60 ng/ml. Her typical dose of vitamin D3 is 4,000iu.
Joe’s athletic pure pack contains 500iu of D3 per packet, so you would definitely want to add extra D3 supplementation. Dr Rhonda Patrick (who’s on Joe’s podcast a lot) aims to maintain a blood concentration between 40 – 60 ng/ml. She typically consumes around 4,000iu – which would mean you need 4 of these capsules, on top of the Athletic Pure Pack.
Glucosamine & Chondroitin
Joe has talked about supplementing glucosamine & chondroitin a couple of different times. The first was in an MMA underground forum post
Then in around 2011 Joe shows his glucosamine & chondratin supplement in his supplement cupboard (video link)
Joe trains hard on a regular basis, and likely takes this to keep his joints healthy.
I’ve grouped the Onnit products Joe takes into their own section, on the basis that he will have a slight bias towards these because he is a co-owner of the company. That being said, he wouldn’t take them if he didn’t think they have some use. Joe posted the below Instagram picture, suggesting that he takes these particular Onnit products from time to time:
Spirulina & Chlorella
Spirulina and chlorella are both blue-green algae that grow naturally in ponds and lakes. Spirulina was actually used as a food source for the Aztecs until the 16th century. One of the soldiers of the Spanish conquistador Cortés wrote about how the Aztecs would harvest spirulina from Lake Texcoco, later turning it into cakes that would be sold.
Contains all the essential amino acids – which is very useful for vegetarians and vegans who can’t get the full spectrum from animal products
Good source of vitamins A, K1, K2, B12 and iron, manganese and chromium
Source of phytonutrients such as carotenoids (vitamin A sources), gamma linoleic acid (healthy fat), superoxide dismutase (anti-inflammatory5) and phycocyanin (anti-inflamatory6)
High in carotenoids (vitamin A sources), vitamin C, folate & iron
High in protein, ~60 of its weight are amino acids
A scientific source for benefits of spirulina & chlorella can be found in this paper (download the PDF and open to view easily).
Alpha Brain Instant + Kegenix Prime
The intent with Alpha Brain is to provide nootropic like benefits using non prescription substances. The heavy hitting nootropics/stimulants are things like modafinil, Ritalin (methylphenidate) and adderall (25% levoamphetamine salts & 75% dextroamphetamine salts). The “problem” with nootropic drugs such as these is that they’re so strong, users often have non-optimal come downs after. For example, if you take adderall to be more productive, you might have a super productive day 1 – but day 2 productivity (off adderall) may be sub-par. At which point if you net out the two days – you may not be up in overall productivity levels. One solution is to dose again on day 2, but this behaviour is not sustainable. Although for single day deadlines, such as students cramming to meet a deadline, you can see how these powerful stimulants became popular.
Alpha Brain then is a nootropic thats a notch below the aforementioned stimulants. But the flip side is it should be more sustainable to take over a longer duration, without so much burn out.
Joe is a fan, and avid consumer of Alpha Brain. However, he notes that all the ingredients are on the label/website, and could be bought separately for less.
His recent “thing” is to combine Alpha Brain Instant (which is flavoured powder form of regular Alpha Brain) with an exogenous ketone supplement called Kegenix:
There’s quite a lot of ketone supplements out there – but what sets this one apart from the crowd is their hybrid formula. Rather than just including exogenous ketone salts (Beta-hydroxybutyrate), they add in medium chain triglycerides. This results in a longer lasting boost to ketones than including BHB salts on their own.
When I saw the above Instagram post, I tried to get hold of the “Wild Berry” version Joe used.
Since Joe’s post, Kegenix have discontinued the old wild berry flavour (unfortunately), re-branded to Kegenix Prime, and offer two flavours; Orange Blast & Lemon Twist.
Shroom Tech Sport
Shroom Tech Sports main ingredient is a mushroom called cordyceps sinensis. There’s a good video with Joe and Aubrey Marcus talking about it:
Studies have shown mixed results when looking at its ability to increase oxygen utilisation (and thus exercise performance). This study was positive and this study was negative. On top of the cordyceps sinensis, the other key ingredients are rhiodiola, ashwaganda, vitamin B12 and green tea extract.
One thing that’s worth noting with supplements that add green tea extract, is that it actually contains caffeine. In my opinion its a bit of a cheeky way of adding caffeine to a product without having to overtly say it contains caffeine as an ingredient on the packaging.
Hopefully the above article has given you a window of insight into the products Joe is taking, and their potential efficacy. Certainly the top list of vitamin and mineral packs, omega-3s and vitamin D3 are crucial for maintaining health. Vitamins, minerals and omega-3s are what are called essential micronutrients, and we have to consume them for our bodies to stay healthy. There is super interesting research into how even mild micronutrient deficiencies over time can cause negative effects, including DNA damage. See Dr Rhonda Patrick’s interview with Bruce Ames for more info on that. And if you enjoy that video, also see his IHMC talk which goes into more detail.
In terms of the Onnit products, I’ve caveated above that Joe is a co-owner, and thus his recommendations are likely biased. That said, I’ve laid out the ones he publicly says he takes so that you can evaluate them yourself.
For a very science based approach to supplementation, I would encourage you to take a look at this post on Dr Rhonda Patrick’s supplement list. Joe has had her on the show many times, and often looks to her for supplement advice.
Joe Rogan talking about diet and supplements on podcast episode #802 with Tom Papa (May 2016): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RnvxVwhecJI&t=68m50s
Mentions his multivitamin (pure encapsulations athlete pure pack), and recommendations for vitamin D3 and omega-3 oils.
– 1:08:50 he talks about Pure Encapsulations Athletic Pure Pack
– 1:01:55 they talk about vitamin D3, vitamin B12, vitamin B3 & omega-3 fish oils
Instagram post from 2013, where Joe talks about his morning supplements, which include:
– Pure Encapsulations Athlete Pure Pack
– Carlsons Super Omega-3 Fish Oil
– Onnit Spirulina & Chlorella
– Vitamin C & Lysine
Worth mentioning the latter two could be biased, as they are from his own supplement brand.